Customer data informs retail conversion strategies that have a higher chance of success. Gathering store retail analytics with a people counting system like Traf-Sys makes increasing your retail conversion rates simpler than ever. You can use your information to observe your customers and practice effective staff management that sells. Learn how to convert in retail with these data-driven and customer-centered approaches.
Optimize Staff Scheduling by Analyzing Store Traffic Data, Not Sales Data
Building your staff schedules around customer traffic numbers can improve your team’s preparedness during busy times of the day. A staffing strategy based solely on sales numbers fail to account for the total number of customers in your store who need assistance. Imagine that it’s lunchtime and a few of your daytime associates are off-the-clock on their lunch break. Employees from businesses across the street are leaving for their lunch breaks as well and decide to kill some time in your store. Suddenly, you have a flood of customers in your store and a shortage of employees to take care of them.
Research shows that during peak traffic times, conversion rates tend to drop. Why is this exactly? In the example above, conversion rates would drop due to long lines at the register or a lack of employees available to assist customers on the floor. Your associates do need to eat. However, to remedy this particular situation, you could consider scheduling breaks a bit before lunch and a bit after lunch so that you are not left swamped during the mid-day rush. If you are tracking the traffic in your store, you will be able to identify other high traffic times during the day, week, month, and year. Knowing your peak traffic times will allow you to ensure that you have enough associates available to assist customers and improve your retail traffic conversion rate.
Observe Store Operations to Identify Why Customers Are Not Buying
Simple observation is another way to identify the reasons why your customers may not be buying. Walk your aisles or stacks discreetly and observe your customers. Are they looking for something that they just can’t find? Or has the item been shelved incorrectly? Is there an associate nearby? If so, are they available to help the customer? What about your store’s merchandising? Is it causing the customer to look twice?
By simply taking the time to watch your customers and jot down some notes, you will be able to determine a few ways that you can begin increasing your retail traffic conversion rate. If you make any changes based on your observations, you will then be able to see if your changes helped by looking at the traffic data.
Develop Sales Associate Training and Set Goals to Help Conversion
Your employees are the ones on the front line dealing with customer after customer every day. It is likely that they may see and experience things that you do not. Talk to them. Why do they think that people don’t buy? How do they believe the store could improve?
Make sure that your staff understands what retail traffic conversion is and how each one of them has a hand in influencing it. Conduct a staff meeting where you determine targeted goals for your retail traffic conversion rates. Turn it into a collaborative or competitive staff effort that will be rewarded somehow. Either way, get the staff excited about increasing your conversion rates. If your staff isn’t passionate about improving conversion rates, then conversion rates will not go up, no matter what you try to do on your own. Once you get your staff excited about improving retail traffic conversion, you can train them in effective ways to help customers and encourage them to buy.
Control Your Register Lines to Improve Customer Satisfaction
Long or slow queues can discourage customers from finalizing a purchase or returning to your store. Make the register line more pleasing for your patrons with strategies such as:
- Placing registers in the back of your store: If you run your registers close to your entrance, try moving them further into your store for a subtler feel.
- Switching to a single-line model: Queuing customers in a single line for all stations can result in faster checkouts and shorter wait times.
- Keeping customers occupied as they wait: Consider ways to make the area near the line more interesting, such as by placing merchandise there.
It may take some experimentation to find methods that improve the queuing experience for your customers. Pay close attention to your traffic, sales and customer satisfaction data to see which approaches deliver the right results.
Improve Store Your Store Layout
Understanding your store’s flow of traffic will allow you to improve your store layout and ultimately your conversion rate. There are a few key things that are vital to take into consideration when thinking about your store’s layout.
- 90% of people are right-handed, which also means they are right-footed. When people enter your store, they are more likely to turn right and work their way around your establishment in a counter-clockwise fashion.
- Aisle width: Wide aisles encourage customers to power-walk through them to their intended destination. Narrow aisles encourage customer browsing and will increase impulse buys.
- However, extremely narrow aisles may get clogged and will make customers exit your store. It is important to find a balance that fits your available space. Narrow aisles could also difficult for people counters to properly count customers.
- High traffic areas and low traffic areas: Promotions will be most successful in high traffic areas of your establishment. Consider placing high-profit items in busy areas and high demand items in low retail store traffic areas, such as at the back of your store. This will help draw customers all the way through your establishment. A greater number of sales associates available to assist customers may be required in these high traffic areas as well.
Offer Price Matching to Compete With Major Retailers and Online Stores
If you sell in a competitive market, price matching can set you apart from other businesses in your industry. This practice can promote retention and make conversions that could go to other retailers. Offering a price match reassures your customer that you prioritize having the lowest prices on the market. It also lets you keep customers who would otherwise go to other retailers with lower prices.
When you’re implementing a price matching policy, remember to balance regulations with ease of access. Find ways for your customer to offer reasonable proof of your competitor’s price that protects your profits. For example, you can provide a 30-day window that gives customers time to redeem their offers.
Present Employee Incentives to Enhance Morale and Increase Store Conversions
You need your entire team to work together to get the most conversions possible. Giving your staff performance incentives gets them involved in conversions and rewards them for their hard work. Ask your employees what they would want as an incentive for sales performance, and help them reach those goals. Make converting customers a team effort by:
- Teaching your staff about conversions: Explain the concept of conversions to your staff, and give them advice on how to finalize sales.
- Setting reasonable goals: Set your conversion targets relative to your current performance to keep employee achievements within reach.
- Asking for employee input: Your staff has one-on-one interactions with customers, so see what they have to say about customer opinions.
These strategies can increase your team’s morale and help them feel involved in your store’s success.
Lead by Example to Demonstrate Top-Quality Customer Service to Your Staff
Small business leaders often involve themselves in day-to-day operations. If you work with customers, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to show your team how you want them to behave on the sales floor. Your employees will model many of their sales strategies on the ones you use in front of them.
As you become a model for your employees, you can make it clear that you expect them to follow your example. Point out when one of your customer interactions succeeds in converting and explain why. If you happen to make a mistake, you can also overview it with your staff and brainstorm better ways to resolve that kind of situation. Opening up to your team in these ways shows that you also want to learn, building trust.
Provide Free Samples to Promote Trust and Brand Awareness
When you give your customers free samples, drinks or snacks, you tap into the human desire to give back. Samples give your customers the feeling that they want to do something for you in return since you gave them a free item. This strategy can also increase conversions by:
- Giving customers a reason to stay: Free drinks and snacks encourage your patrons to browse the store as they enjoy them.
- Offering the chance to try out new products: If you give out samples of a new product, you can get feedback about customer interest.
- Raising awareness about your business: People who get free samples that they enjoy will often tell their friends about the experience.
Remember to choose samples that fit your audience. For example, you may want to provide a vegan option if you offer food samples at a holistic wellness store.
Manage Your Inventory Levels to Keep Your Business Well-Stocked
Maintaining a stock that matches your sales patterns will promote customer satisfaction and raise conversion rates. Pay attention to your patrons’ favorite goods, and check on their stock numbers. Keeping popular items in stock ensures that your customers will count on you as a source for their favorite products.
In instances where you run out of a well-loved item, a contingency plan can help you keep customers moving toward a conversion. Find ways to encourage them to wait for your item to come back or purchase an alternative. For example, if you have online sales, you can show them where to order the product and offer free shipping. You could also promise to text or call them when the product comes back in stock.
Implement and Promote a Hassle-Free Return Policy
Returns are an unavoidable part of retail. Some managers only see the negative side of the return equation and miss out on the positive impact it can have on sales. Train your team to promote and highlight your store’s return policy. This can be an effective way to minimize the fears and hesitations some customers may have before completing their purchase.
Here are some common concerns your customers may be asking themselves before walking to the checkout counter:
- This cost more than I was planning to spend. Can I really afford to make this purchase?
- The product seems great now, but will I actually use it?
- What happens if the item is defective or breaks?
- Looks great here in the store, but what if I don’t like the way this looks in my home?
Concerns like these can be eliminated with a simple reminder of the store’s return policy, increasing the rate of conversion. Granted, a small percentage of these sales may come back as a return, but the net-benefit from additional sales can have a substantial impact on the bottom line.
How People Counting Data From Traf-Sys Can Help You Increase Retail Conversion Rates
If you need a reliable and valuable people counter system, let our state-of-the-art technology guide your business strategy. Our hardware and software can record accurate data on the number of people entering or leaving your store. Let precise foot traffic information inform your conversion strategies and increase your profits. Request a free quote today by contacting a customer representative.